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Garden visits - Asphodèle group, Vendée

ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 23,384

Last spring I joined the Vendée garden group but an admin glitch meant I only received my first email on Thursday.  Garden visits this Sunday so I packed up OH, a picnic lunch and my camera and off we went.  First stop a country garden in Martinet and then a town garden in Aizenay.

The first garden is 1 hectare/2.5 acres and is owned by a couple of recently retired farmers - apple orchards and cattle - who developed a passion for plants which cope with their acidic soil.   Seems to me they're more interested in acquisition than after care so I was itching to get out my secateurs, trusty hoe and a tree surgeon but they do have some interesting plants.    

They started with shrubs and trees about 50 years ago and she has added perennials but banished annuals.  It does have a lovely atmosphere.  The flowering hedge is abelia and, apparently, once the pale petals fall the pink calyxes stay on till the February trim.  It's gorgeous.

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More pics here - http://s211.photobucket.com/user/Obelixx_be/library/1709%20Guilbetiere?sort=2&page=1

Second garden is a long, narrow town garden lanted in jungle style and filled with sculptures the owner makes from found metal objects.  He also teaches these skill in Madagascar and Tanzania to help locals re-cycle and earn money.  

I find such gardens claustrophobic and out of place in northern Europe but this one does have added interest.

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More here - got to love the sculptures.

http://s211.photobucket.com/user/Obelixx_be/library/1709%20Aizenay?sort=2&page=1

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
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  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 66,139

    image Thanks for sharing

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 23,384

    What did you think of the jungle art?

    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 66,139

    I think most of it works really well ... such things often leave me cold as they're too quirky, but I think these really fit into the jungle theme without making if look like a fairgroundimage

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • Joyce21Joyce21 Posts: 15,489

    Some lovely trees in the farm garden.

    The town garden leaves me cold. Plant forms and the sculptures are 'hard'.

    SW Scotland
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 23,384

    Yes Joyce - some lovely trees and shrubs too but nearly all needing at least a tweak if not major surgery to remove broken limbs (lots of stormy winds there) or else their crowns lifting and thinning to help out the stuff underneath or just improve their form.

    Dove - yes, it is hard feeling cos those palm leaves are very unforgiving and, whilst the sculptures were fun, they ended up being a bit samey.   That said, I'd happily make a space for the dragon on the roof and the giraffe and the elephant.

    Last edited: 21 September 2017 12:06:07

    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 23,384

    On Friday, OH and I were invited for a private viewing of two nearby gardens belonging to garden club members.  They’re a very genial lot and keen to offer and swap cuttings, divisions and seeds.  I resisted asw e have no beds prepared yet because of the drought but, even so, I now have a golden form of pineapple sage and a cassia baby plus some seeds for an annual with beautiful blue flowers and white centres.

    Too many pics to load individually so albums again - best viewed as a slideshow and with Adblock Plus installed (free) if you haven't already.

    The first garden is full of interesting plants and huge roses climbing up into trees as well as shrub forms.  Much is new since she took it on 10 years ago but there are also plenty of old trees and shrubs and two rows of espaliered fruit needing some restorative pruning but still producing juicy, tasty fruits.

    http://s211.photobucket.com/user/Obelixx_be/library/1709%20Isabelle?sort=2&page=1 

    The second garden is a bit bigger and has a productive potager with intriguing hats of chicken wire to keep pigeons off the salads.  He also builds and sculpts with wood and metal and wicker and has some ingenious planting tricks too.   Check out the tree house but also the lovely hummocks of box and Japanese maple and the foliage shapes and colours.

    http://s211.photobucket.com/user/Obelixx_be/library/1709%20Alcime%20et%20Sylvia?sort=2&page=1

    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • chickychicky SurreyPosts: 9,374

    So many things to love in that last one - but the mosaic snake on the pebbles and the bug hotel with built in butterfly motif deserve a special mention ......genius image

    We did not inherit the earth from our grandparents.  We’re borrowing it from our children.
  • Joyce21Joyce21 Posts: 15,489

    Agree with Chicky re the second garden.  The acer with the moss (?) mounds the cloud pruning, superb tree house, wooden sculptures, the mosaic snake and the hanging ferns etc.

    SW Scotland
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 23,384

    Fab isn't it?  The mosaic snake and tulips are her work.  Apparently another member gives classes on a Monday evening.  Will have to think about that.

    He used to work in the plastics industry and made all those birds in the pond himself from his own resin mold and then resin and sand mix to get the birds.   Those big slabs between the two ponds are normally stepping stones across the water but the drought has left them high and dry.

    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • LiriodendronLiriodendron Scariff, County Clare, IrelandPosts: 6,619

    Some lovely stuff here, Obelixx - thank you for taking time to post them.

    I'm not sure if I was looking at a sculpture or a log store, but either way it was intriguing...

    "The one who plants trees, knowing that he will never sit in their shade, has at least started to understand the meaning of life."  Rabindranath Tagore
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